Spicy Soba Noodle Salad with Thai-Style Peanut Dressing

This is Sarah Simmons’s completely inauthentic take on Chinese peanut noodles. Made with soba noodles and Thai pantry staples (red curry paste, coconut milk, chile and cilantro), it’s lighter, brighter and spicier than the original.

Slideshow: Noodle Salads

Recipe from Food & Wine America's Greatest New Cooks
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 6 first-course servings

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  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped Vidalia or other sweet onion
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded and minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Thai red curry paste
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1/3 cup chicken stock or low-sodium broth
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • Salt
  • 1 pound dried soba noodles
  • 1 cup finely julienned carrots
  • 1 cup finely julienned cucumber
  • Finely grated lime zest and chopped cilantro, for garnish

How to make this recipe

  1. In a medium saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil until shimmering. Add the onion and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened and just starting to brown, about 5 minutes. Add the jalapeño, garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant, 1 minute. Add the peanut butter and red curry paste and cook over moderately low heat, stirring, until smooth, about 2 minutes. Whisk in the coconut milk, chicken stock, soy sauce and sugar and simmer until thickened slightly, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat. Whisk in the lime juice and season with salt; let cool completely.

  2. Meanwhile, in a large pot of salted boiling water, cook the soba noodles until al dente, about 5 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold running water until cooled. Shake out the excess water and blot the soba dry. Transfer the noodles to a large bowl and toss with the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of oil. Add the spicy peanut dressing and toss well to coat thoroughly. Add the carrots and cucumber and toss again. Garnish the soba with the lime zest and cilantro and serve.

Make Ahead

The peanut dressing can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.

Photo © Christina Holmes

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